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Comment: Re:That's a squirrley definition of free speech. (Score 1) 284

by Macdude (#46942423) Attached to: Russia Quietly Passes Anti-Blogger Law

[Sigh] It is not illegal to yell "Fire" in a crowded theater. What the first amendment doesn't do is protect you from prosecution if your yelling "Fire" causes a panic. So you have the right to yell "Fire", you will just be held accountable if doing so causes a panic.

From Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.'s (unanimous ) opinion, "The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic".

Comment: Re:No F#$KING way (Score 1) 567

What are the parameters that define a "good" driver. Going below the speed limit on a highway in the left lane. Being lucky when you don't look right or left making a turn onto a street? Taking way to long to brake?

That's the real question isn't it, how are they going to define a safe driver vs. a risky driver. One way is to collect telemetry from people for a while and then compare the telemetry of the people that have collisions with the people who don't and look for statistically valid differences.

I've been driving for decades, I've put over 300,000 miles under me, but I bet those damn things would label me a bad driver

Any time I hear something like this I'm reminded of the fact that when asked, most people rate themselves as above average drivers. Not to say that you're not a good driver, but your driving ability is anecdotal at best. Why would you think they would label you a bad driver? Note I'd prefer to use the terms safe driver and risky driver.

for I accelerate firmly coming onto a highway, I don't brake forever coming off a highway,

With, I'd imagine, long periods driving at a constant velocity in between, why would you think that makes you a risky driver? That's what you're supposed to do. The risky driver is the guy who accelerates firmly and brakes firmly repeatedly and often in city traffic.

I tend to exceed the posted speed limit by a few miles when in the left lane and certainly when passing

Any rational system wouldn't rate someone as risky for exceeding the speed limit in a calm manner by a small percentage, particularly on a highway.

and i do my best to maintain situational awareness when behind the wheel.

By looking at vehicles' telemetry it would be very easy to identify the people who tailgate (due to their need to constantly adjust their speed), change lanes frequently and abruptly, drive significantly faster than the surrounding traffic, etc. It would also be easy to identify the people who practice good defensive driving techniques.

These devices will do nothing to bring about "safe" driving because that term is still relative to skill, conditions, and environment.

Actually it's got a good chance to reduce collisions. People drive at their own acceptable level of perceived risk. If driving in a risky manner puts them at risk of higher insurance rates they will modify their driving habits.

Flo can take her device and shove it somewhere dark, just not in my car.

That's OK, once these become standard you will always be able to opt out. Of course that means you will be placed in the highest risk category and pay the highest premiums, but at least they won't have a tracker in your car.

My issue with this sort of device isn't that it will be used in determining insurance premiums, my issue is "What else will it be used for?"

Comment: That's how it's supposd to work. (Score 1) 621

by Macdude (#44942849) Attached to: GTA V Proves a Lot of Parents Still Don't Know or Care About ESRB Ratings

While ESRB ratings and other warnings about violent games for kids have good reason to exist, many parents still ignore them, aren't aware to them, or simply don't care about their warnings

"Many parents still ignore them", which is fine, they are warnings not commandments.

"or simply don't care about their warnings", which is fine, they are warnings not commandments.

"aren't aware to them", which is a publicity issue for the ESRB and not the fault of the parents -- assuming for a moment that anything more than a statistically insignificant number of people aren't aware of them.

The ESRB warning are there so that parents can make decisions about their own children themselves. That their decisions differ from yours isn't a failing of the warnings. It's a failure of you for wanting to control other people's lives.

Comment: Re:Easy! (Score 1) 481

by Macdude (#44920777) Attached to: CCC Says Apple iPhone 5S TouchID Broken

Maybe not In the video; the guy using the plastic strip to trick the device is holding the plastic strip over the same finger that can legitimately unlock the device.

Go re-watch the video and pay attention this time... He used his index finger to lock the phone and his middle finger to unlock it using the "plastic strip".

Comment: We have a duty... (Score 1) 256

by Macdude (#44853195) Attached to: US, Russia Agree On Plan To Dispose of Syria's Chemical Weapons

Don't we also have a duty to preserve a world free from flying killer robots for our children?

Isn't it the killing that's the terrible thing, not the method that's used? This reminds me of the stupidity of classifying some crimes as "hate crimes", as if it's worse that someone gets beat up because they're gay than if they get beat up because they're walking down the wrong street.

Comment: Re:Or... (Score 1) 341

by Macdude (#44719683) Attached to: The Golden Gate Barrage: New Ideas To Counter Sea Level Rise

...maybe put that brainpower into solving the actual global problem, rather than finding a bandaid solution to the local symptom....

Given that solving the global problem would pretty much require us to stop all fossil fuel use, stop all food-animal production, stop all rain-forest destruction and start an effective process of eliminating termites (they are huge methane producers) I think we can pretty much rule out being able to solve the global problem.

Since the current plans to "deal with" global warming are about slowing the affects of global warming not stopping or reversing it -- so your town won't be under water for seventy years instead of fifty -- the rational course of action is to start dealing with the current and upcoming effects.

To use a non-automotive analogy, global warming is like a huge snowball rolling down a snowy hillside. You can waste a bunch of time fruitlessly trying to stop it or slow it down but you'd be better off beating it down the hill and moving anything it's going to hit out of its way.

If you fail to plan, plan to fail.